If you’re suffering with headaches, irritability, abdominal pain and/or bloating, constipation may be to blame. Several everyday foods have a reputation for causing this uncomfortable condition. Fine-tuning your diet may help you find relief. This constipation cheat sheet helps you select the foods which support a happier and healthier digestive system.
The most constipating foods
- Cheese and milk: Dairy products can slow digestion, especially if they are high in fat. They also contain lactose which may cause gas and bloating for those who suffer from lactose intolerance.
- Red meat: Red meat is high in fat and iron, and low in fiber. This can slow down the digestion process. Pile on the veggies if a T-bone, ribeye or porterhouse is on your plate.
- Chocolate: Chocolate is high in fat and sugar, two nutrients which may play havoc on your bowels. Chocolate also contains caffeine which may cause dehydration, aggravating constipation.
Foods to consume with caution
- Bananas: This favorite tropical fruit may cause occasional constipation or provide relief, depending on its ripeness. Green bananas’ high starch content may slow you down, but yellow bananas’ soluble fiber supports healthy bowels.
- Bread: Many people are sensitive to gluten, the protein found in wheat, rye and other grains. If you are gluten-sensitive, bread and baked goods may trigger occasional constipation or diarrhea.
- Potato chips: This high-fat, salt-loaded snack may slow down your digestive system as well as lead to bloating if you overindulge. Enjoy a few, then put the bag aside.
Foods which support regularity
- Beans: Beans are rich in constipation-fighting soluble fiber, but consuming them may cause gas. A side effect-free way to boost your fiber intake is gluten-free Regular Girl. This fiber supplement made from guar beans is specially formulated to be gentle on your system. Plus, it dissolves invisibly into most food and beverages, making it easy to care for your insides.
- Yogurt: Fermented foods such as yogurt and sauerkraut contain beneficial bacteria which aids digestion. Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are especially known to support digestive health. Regular Girl contains 8 billion CFU of Bifidobacterium lactis for intestinal health. Look for live Lactobacillus cultures in your yogurt and sauerkraut.
- Blueberries: This high-fiber fruit supports your digestive health. Sprinkle them on your cereal, blend them into a smoothie or eat them by the handful. They’re great for kids, too.